Reds Secure Two More Key Players

The week started with Adelaide United announcing the retention of A-League Women’s top scorer Fiona Worts. It’s ending with the South Australians securing another two key players for next season (24/3/22).

Adelaide United announced today that both Nanako Sasaki and Ella Tonkin have signed two-year contract extensions with the Club until the end of the Liberty A-League 2023/24 season.

Sasaki was a revelation for the Reds in 2021/22, making a seamless transition to the Liberty A-League after years dominating the local Women’s National Premier League (WNPL) with Adelaide City and Adelaide Comets.  

The 23-year-old Japanese midfielder made 13 starts in a total of 14 appearances while scoring two goals and registering two assists. She also received three votes in the Impetus Weekly Player of the Week Awards this season.

After putting pen-to-paper on her two-year deal, Sasaki, said: “I’m very happy to know my future lies with Adelaide United.

Above: Nanako Sasaki in action for Adelaide United this season – she’s just extended her contract by another two years. Photo: Adelaide United.

“It was an amazing season from an individual and team perspective and it’s a great group of people to be around.

“Adrian (Stenta) is a fantastic coach and hopefully next season, we can build on the progress we made this year.”

Meanwhile, Tonkin, who played for Football SA NTC in the state Women’s NPL, also experienced a breakout season, starting five times in a total of nine appearances.

The 19-year-old defender completed her third campaign as a Red having made her debut during the 2019/20 season.

Speaking on committing her future to Adelaide for the next two years, Tonkin, said: “It’s a fantastic feeling to be re-signing with the club I’ve grown up supporting my whole life.

“After getting more minutes under my belt this season it has really instilled a lot of belief in myself.

Above: Local talent Ella Tonkin has signed on at Adelaide United for another two seasons. Photo: Adelaide Untied.

“Despite making finals for the first time, it was a frustrating end to the season and hopefully we can learn from the setback and come back stronger.”

Adelaide United’s Liberty A-League Head Coach, Adrian Stenta, said: “Re-signing both Nano and Ella for the next two seasons is excellent as they’re both important players for us.

“Nano was instrumental in our midfield and showed she clearly belongs at this level. She was brilliant in her debut season and I’m confident she will only continue to improve.

“Ella also made impressive strides forward this year and demonstrated she is more than capable of playing in this competition. Her versatility in defence and sometimes as a holding midfielder provides the team with not only depth but flexibility.”

Artwork: Graphics by PW.

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